Uke News from NAMM – Part 2
In part 1 covering ukulele at NAMM 2014 seen HERE we showed some pics from our favorite ukulele makers. This year we attempted sound samples in spite of the chaotic atmosphere that goes on here. To do this I used a Sound Devices 722 field recorder and a pair of Schoeps CMC6 mics to capture sound as uncompressed and “true” as possible. There is no alteration or enhancement to the audio so listen on good speakers or headphones if you really want to hear the tone.
So first off we will show you the new Pono Pro Classic RS and RC, soprano and concert with a spruce top and rosewood sides and back. They join the line as well as the mahogany PC models you see below. (Noa Bonk in the background)
These feature European spruce, Indonesian rosewood, and Hawaiian koa binding. They come with the Gotoh UPT tuners and an arched top wood case like all Pro Classics. Next we see a Tahitian inspired 8 string from the Pono TE line. This has a hole in the back, not front, much like a Tahitian ukulele but it is strung and tuned like a normal 8 string.
Finishing off at the Ko’olau booth Corey samples a CS model Ko’olau, Spruce/Rosewood.
Next we are over at the Cordoba Booth where Corey samples the new 22 series from them. Solid spruce top ukes and very affordable. The videos show the soprano, concert, tenor, and baritone. Below Zach plays the new 32TCE. Tenor Spruce/Rosewood with a cutaway and pickup. They had low G’s on the 30 series which I thought was pretty cool.
Next we went to the Kala Booth and got samples of a few new ukes. The first is a solid spruce top long neck soprano, SSLNG, followed by a travel concert with spalted maple sides and back and a cutaway. Then we got a quick bite from the new USA made banjo ukes. I am hoping to catch a video with Mike Upton tomorrow on their new USA made acoustic basses. They’re super nice!
At lunch I saw Pepe Romero Jr. in the hotel lobby next to the convention center. He had a back with four ukes and a mini classical in hand. So I grabbed Corey to show you the new little baby Romero. Newborn, the “XS Soprano”. A similar concept to the Tiny Tenor, it has the scale of a soprano but with the body length and portability of a sopranino, and it was strung with a low G.
What I didn’t know was that Pepe had planned on meeting up with Daniel Ho. What a treat!
So… lots more to show but the upload speed here is painfully slow so I will be back soon with more from NAMM 2014.